This month, we’re taking time to shine the spotlight on the very lifeblood of our ministries – our volunteers. And we’ll be carefully unpacking our new ebook by Chris Mavity, ‘Your Volunteers: Recruit,’ taking an in-depth look at the health of our volunteers because healthy volunteers lead to healthy ministry, and churches that successfully create a thriving culture of volunteers experience growth, discipleship, and other ministry objectives.
In the book, Mavity says, “Early in His ministry, Jesus recognized the simple fact that He couldn’t do it all and that He’d need help. Jesus’ solution? Volunteers.
“That’s right. Jesus selected volunteers to join His ministry effort. Today, we call twelve of Jesus’ early volunteers apostles. We read about their selection and training in the Gospels, and their ministry results are outlined in the first part of the book of Acts and various New Testament epistles.
“Ministry strategy hasn’t changed much over the past couple millennia. Today, there is still too much to do but not enough time to do it, and no one person possesses the talents, gifts, abilities, and anointing to do it all. Your solution? Volunteers!”
Volunteer ministry is one of the most pressing topics among church leaders today – and rightfully so. Nothing can propel your ministry further and faster than thriving, healthy volunteers. Developing a thriving volunteer ministry is arguably the best way to ensure the long-term health and vitality of your church.
But many churches still have questions when it comes to creating a comprehensive volunteer strategy. Some have volunteers that seem to do everything but are looking for other people to share the load. Others are great at recruiting but don’t know how to train or equip their volunteers properly.
POP QUIZ: Which takes priority – discipleship or volunteering?
The short answer to this trick question: Both.
Healthy volunteers are growing in their relationship with God. People who are growing in their relationship with God naturally desire to serve.
This is a new concept for many churches because they traditionally have separated the spiritual growth ministry from the volunteer ministry when in reality, the two go hand-in-hand.
So before we begin our series about our greatest ministry asset – people – and delve deeper into Chris Mavity’s ebook this month, here are five articles you may have missed that cover each of the five critical tenets of developing and fostering healthy volunteer operations that lead to healthy ministry.
Volunteers are perhaps the single greatest asset of any community of faith. Healthy churches empower individuals to be actively engaged in ministry rather than passively participating in events. But how do you go about growing your volunteer base? Training pastors about volunteer management is one of the greatest skill sets needed for local church ministry.
Training volunteers is an integral component of making an impact on our communities and spreading the Gospel. However, that doesn’t mean it is an easy task by any means. Volunteer scheduling conflicts and the limited time available to devote to training and equipping volunteers are just two of the challenges that make it difficult for church leaders.
Volunteers are a precious component of church life. When the purpose of each puzzle piece is made clear, volunteers can do amazing work to grow the Kingdom. Providing them with a job description is a great foundation for equipping them to own a particular area of ministry – and volunteers with job descriptions are more motivated, feel more effective, and last longer than volunteers without one.
These five steps are critical if you want to move your volunteers from the mindset of simply filling a volunteer role to actually being the ministry of the church. Volunteers who have been given the tools to succeed are the glue that holds the Body together. Your volunteers are much less likely to fall through the cracks when a well-equipped strategy is in place.
Your church’s process for training, equipping, and supporting volunteer leaders impacts your potential for growth more than any other aspect of your ministry. Therefore, we should leverage every tool we have if we want to be good stewards of the people God has entrusted to us. Technology enables you to continue to support and monitor volunteers once they’re plugged in.
As your church implements the ideas in these articles and the subsequent articles in this series that cover ‘Your Volunteers’ you will also see discipleship-level growth that naturally multiplies. Together, volunteerism and discipleship will work together to produce a healthy ministry for God’s glory.